A Gel Manicure Without the Gel June 24 2013

Gel manicures are hot this season, for obvious reasons: who doesn’t want a manicure that lasts two weeks without chipping? And as spring and summer tend to make manicures devolve into peeled messes even quicker given the weather, swimming, and general outdoor fun we all engage in, they’re even more enticing. So how do you make your hands look as good as your cute iPhone 4 cases, and stay that way?


The Average Manicure

In some cases, your polish chips because you aren’t doing it exactly right. So how do you get the best chances at a chip-proof manicure? Start by lightly buffing the nails with a four-sided block, and then wipe them down with nail polish remover. This gets rid of dust and natural oils that can make it hard for the polish to bond with your nails. Then, add one coat of a basecoat, applying a thin layer to the tips of your nails as well. Use an actual base coat, not a base / topcoat (the shiny finish of those products means there’s more chances of the polish peeling off). 

Then, apply two thin coats of your color, wait for this to dry for a few minutes, and then apply an anti-chip top coat. With each of these three layers, tip the ends of the nails so that the polish and topcoat essentially wrap around the nail. This little trick can extend the lifetime of your manicure by, like, a whole lot.


The Non-Gel Gel

It was only a matter of time, but companies are now coming out with “gel” manicures all in one bottle, and they don’t require any lamps or other paraphernalia. They claim to last about two weeks without chips and can be a great replacement for your standard basecoat-polish-topcoat choices.

Choose from any of the hottest spring and trends for nails, or get a bit cute and make your manicure match your iPhone 4 case